The Softspoken Gangster feat. HVRMINN

February 19th, 2014

One of our favorite menswear presentations from this past NY Fashion week was a collection of prohibition-era-inspired tailoring by HVRMINN (pronouced Hur-Minn).

“It’s actually my full name. My heritage is Korean, and in Korea your first name becomes your last name. So my name in America is Minn Hur, but in Korea I’m called Hur Minn. [For the brand name] I just changed the “U” into a Latin “V” to show my appreciation for the classics.”

Shortly after graduating from the Parsons school of design in NYC, HVRMINN was born as a sartorial made-to-measure brand produced in Martin Greenfield’s legendary Brooklyn workshop. Two years later Minn expanded the brand by adding a ready-to-wear label under the name EPONYMOVS by HVRMINN, and man does it look awesome! On the side of managing his made-to-measure clientele and a full ready-to-wear line, he is also the creative director of the militaristic outerwear line VIETTO NYC. Needless to say, Minn is a very busy and hard-working designer.

What I love most about HVRMINN’s designs is that they all clearly derive from his personal style and the aesthetic of his favorite time period.

“[My primary inspiration is] 1920s and 1930s American menswear. I’ve always romanticized the Jazz Age era, when suits were everyday wear. There was no concept of ‘casual attire’ with jeans. Everyone wore tailored garments; a three-piece suit with a fedora and a walking cane, stuff like that. [It was a time when] people cared about class and culture… My collections are more about reviving the true American classics and highlighting the elegance of man, rather than dandy-ness.”

We caught up with the softspoken prohibition-gangster-looking menswear designer in NYC to give you a taste of his personal style (which, in my opinion, is among the best we’ve ever featured).

1. Camels & Leopards

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It’s one thing that Minn has already perfected the “slim but not tight, with a little drape” fit that reckons back to the classic gentleman era. But then he puts together a lethally sharp camel & black color palette and finishes off the look with some unexpectedly modern touches (such as the black/gold chunky frames, the geometric rings, and those crazy leopard loafers).

On a side note, camel and black is one of the sharpest color combos a man can wear. Daytime or evening.

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“Large lapels and elongated coat lengths are the key constituents of my clothes to revive and reinterpret the 1930’s Jazz Age aesthetic.

I’m not a big fan of wearing too many colors at the same time. For harmonious styling consider the textures, weights, and saturations of the clothes.”  

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I love that he made this entire look strikingly more modern with the leopard print tassel loafs, all while keeping in the camel/black color story! 

That move is not for beginners.

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  • Vintage Sunglasses
  • Camel double breasted overcoat by EPONYMOVS
  • Double breasted Suit by HVRMINN
  • Black shirt by EPONYMOVS
  • Black Tie by Drake’s
  • Leopard shoes by Magnanni

2. Military Chic

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“I design outerwear pieces (like this army inspired wool trench) for Vietto NYC with the aim of providing the ‘ultimate masculine aesthetic’. I refine the quality of genuine military uniforms by using high-end fabrics and craftsmanship, while maintaining the authentic details and oversized silhouettes.”

One thing that is noticeably consistent across all of HVRMINN’s designs is that they are remarkably, and perfectly, minimalist. He acknowledges the subtlety of clothing design and doesn’t force the issue. His goal is simply to create beautiful, versatile pieces that will last the test of time.

“My motto is: Less is More.”

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“The denim shirt is by EPONYMOVS. It’s our signature shirt that has the buttons in the middle of the collar which function as a collar pin [just another one of those clever details that pays homage to subtly modernizing the best of the old-school]”.

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A strong case for the single monkstrap here. He makes these loafers look like a million bucks.

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  • Sunglasses by Persol
  • US Army Overcoat by Vietto NYC
  • Suit by HVRMINN
  • Denim shirt is by EPONYMOVS
  • Silk Grenadine Tie by Drake’s
  • Monkstrap Loafers by Magnanni

3. All About Balance

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You know you’ve honed your aesthetic when you can combine two very different pieces (like a handmade double-breasted pinstripe suit and a M51 military field coat) and look this seamlessly put-together.

“Via the two brands EPONYMOVS and Vietto NYC, I aim to find a perfect place to balance aesthetics and practicality.”

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The key to pulling-off a casual coat over a suit is making sure it’s long enough to cover the hemline of the jacket. Here, for example, the M51 coat is roughly an inch longer than his pinstripe suit jacket – which I would bet was carefully planned from the early design stages.

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Finally, take one last tip from a true military-inspired gentleman: always keep your shoes freshly shined.

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Thanks, as always, for reading and special thanks to HVRMINN for participating! You can keep up with HVRMINN by checking out his blog/inspiration board at www.newamsterdamboys.com.

Yours in style,

Articles of Style

 

Photography by Alex Crawford 

  • Tony Eugene Parham Jr.

    these two are shinning beacons in the menswear world. i forsee a national brand takeover within 5 years. just pristine. this is what inspires me to do what i do.

  • Ishandev

    Look 1 needs to be framed. Dan, that is the best winter look you’ve featured. Period.

  • Silviu

    I’ve been looking everywhere for a dress shirt with that type of collar like the one in the last picture. Old school. Great looks and extremely well tailored gear.

  • JoeFromTexas

    I really liked this feature. I get that his influences are rooted in the past, and yet nothing comes off as old-timey costumes. Just really sharp, perfectly fitting suits. The coats at a glance look like a surplus find that’s been tailored perfectly, but at a second glance, the details and materials suggest that it’s a designer piece without screaming it out.

  • JoeFromTexas

    I really liked this feature. I get that his influences are rooted in the past, and yet nothing comes off as old-timey costumes. Just really sharp, perfectly fitting suits. The coats at a quick glance look like a surplus find that’s been tailored perfectly, but at a second glance, the details and materials suggest that it’s a designer piece without screaming it out. Less is definitely more. Beautiful work.

  • Blackhood

    How can you claim that “Finally, take one last tip from a true military-inspired gentleman: always keep your shoes freshly shined.” on shoes with the buckles undone?

    This obsession with Sprez is stupid. It makes it obvious that the guy spent 4 hours bulling his shoes and then forgot how to put them on.

    • Owen

      I totally agree. You can’t just leave your shoes undone and call it Sprezz, especially when the rest of your outfilt is so clean and put together with care.

      • ?

        Who called it Sprez?

        • Owen

          So the guy simply forgot to fasten his shoes? Why?

          • ?

            I wouldn’t equate unbuckling monk straps to sprez-esqe. Plus, the shoe shine tip was inserted by the writer, not Minn. We can’t know the intention..

            Aside from that, what’s wrong with sprez anyway? Men’s clothing is centered around it; men are advised to keep the second button of their suit jackets unfastened. Why? Because it makes one look uptight, and overdone. What’s wrong with having your look seem nonchalant and laid back? Everyone is guilty of it to some extent.

  • Olerud_4_Life

    Second and third looks are tough

  • Owen

    I wonder how many gentlemen of the 20’s and 30’s wandered around with their shoes unfastened. This is one trend I wish would disappear and never return. Apart from that, look 3 is amazing!

  • John B

    Not really a fan of the black shirt, but everything else is perfect. I really like the military coats. Between these two here and Angel’s one, I’m getting really jealous!

  • http://www.MrEssentialist.com/ Mr Essentialist

    Awesome coat and shoes. And the shades? Woah.
    http://www.mressentialist.com

  • Joseph

    Honestly blown away by this feature.
    From the standpoint of styling as well as design, this man knows what he’s doing.

  • Drew Middleton

    DAMN. Killer looks. Awesome post guys!

  • Miguel

    Love all three looks, the overcoats, suit and DM strap shoes were on point, sharp really sharp. Keep it coming.

  • Mark Smith

    Those huge lapels on that camel coat are delicious.

  • cam

    the eponymovs AW14 presentation was sublime

    • http://www.TSBmen.com/ Dan Trepanier

      Agreed. I want it all.

  • http://whentowear.tumblr.com/ WhenToWear

    This has been the best style feature in months. He is always such a well dressed dude. The camel/black/leopard look was my favorite.

  • MS

    Dude looks like a million dollars.

  • Jeanscuffed

    This dude is an assassin! The fit on his suits are amazing and his boldness/confidence to pull it off is key here. Thanks for the article on this guy and his brand. I’m definitely going to look more from him. And those leopard loafers in Look #1….well hell, matter of fact, ALL his shoes are sick.
    Im curious to see who this Kevin Wang is and how his style syncs with Minn’s

    • Paul Kim

      This dude is awesome.

      • Jeanscuffed

        So is his hair part. Very distinct additive to his look.

  • Shawn

    Was waiting for a HVRMINN feature for a long time now, and boy, it doesn’t disappoint. But, I think you should have featured the 2 guys behind the HVRMINN brand (the other guy is called Kevin Wang if I recall), because they make such a great pair when photographed together! I raise my hat to this gentleman for his unique sense of style and jaw-dropping looks (outerwear is out of this world!)

  • http://unseenflirtspoetry.wordpress.com Unseen Flirtations

    *Golfclap*

    Absolutely sublime tailoring. Playful, knowing, balanced and nuanced, yet gasoline clean and razor edged. Dangerously secure and other such oxymorons. I applaud.